Day 24

Ways of Looking at a Mango


the mango tree in the backyard

was easy to climb – I became

the captain of endless ocean gardens


still tart or “turned,” the thought

of the green mango puckers –

it will be eaten with pepper and salt


the ripe blackie mango should be bitten

at the end, splitting the gaping skin

an omnivore gets sticky with yellow blood


our poodles were fond of mango season

leaving white seed bones in the grass,

for months their furry flews stained golden


in Hope Pastures, a wandering herd

of cows makes a quotidian visit to feast

on the manna of today’s fallen mango


“turn the pot cover down” – cooking is superflous

every visitor gifts their surplus mangoes

in round green – yellowish, reddish – all delicious


when the cows don’t pass, we clear the driveway

the pungent sugary rot of fermenting mangoes

flies, worms and all – go to compost


no need to buy a crocus bag full, Auntie Polly sends

up from Sav her famous mango curried crab

mango season is crab season


there are favourites like East Indian, Black Mango

Number Eleven, Robin or Julie. I roll the Stringy

underfoot, then squeeze out the juice hungrily


at the new Indian restaurant flourished, a rich orange

mango lassi with a dash of perfumed cardamom

to my right hand. Before my birthday treat


uptown style – Bombay mango cut in half

twisted easily into two small bowls to cup

ice-cream, and scoop up by spoon


uptown again – in the sliced off cheeks

of the Julie mango, cut a tic tac toe

and then invert like a porcupine back


hunting down items for a mango chutney

hunting down names for the vintage – is its rose

peach and melon, or papaya and bergamot?



Saffron – April 2020



Write about a particular fruit – your choice. But I’d like you to describe this fruit as closely as possible. Perhaps your poem could attempt to tell the reader some (or all!) of the following about your chosen fruit: What does it look like, how does it feel, how does it smell, what does it taste like, where did you find it, do you need to thump it to know if it’s ripe, how do you get into it (peeling, a knife, your teeth), do you need to spit out the seeds, should you bake it, can you make jam with it, do you have to fight the birds for it, when is it available, do you need a ladder to pick it, what is your favorite memory of eating it, if you threw it at someone’s head would it splatter them or knock them out, is it expensive . . . As you may have realized from this list, there’s honestly an awful lot you can write about a fruit!